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Strategic Impact Inquiries

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Women's Empowerment SII Overview
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 The Strategic Impact Inquiry (SII) on Women's Empowerment

The Strategic Impact Inquiry (SII) on Women's Empowerment was a three-year, multi-site, participatory and rigorous review of the impacts that CARE's  worldwide programming is (and is not) having on women's empowerment. Learn more about the SII on women's empowerment.

 The SII Story - How to Use This Site

The SII's story can be told in multiple ways. Spanning nearly 30 countries, hundreds of projects, and the views of thousands of women, the SII draws key insights about women's empowerment work across different regions, and across different sectors and approaches that CARE engages. Beyond the findings themselves, the methods used in the SII have left CARE with important approaches and tools for rigorous and empowering research.

This website is, first and foremost, a library - a tool for learners, and repository for hundreds of important documents that constitute CARE's institutional memory of the SII. Like any good library, we have tried to organize it in ways that make it easy for you to locate the documents most relevant to you. To help you navigate this site, SII resources and lessons are organized around:

  • Women's Empowerment Framework:  How CARE conceptualized women's empowerment for the purpose of the SII, and some key lessons learned as we tested it in the research. The framework is further supplemented by a visual learning tool on women's empowerment.
  • Methods: Methods and approaches important for planning and conducting studies on women's empowerment that are ethical, rigorous and participatory. This includes our Global Research Framework, Women's Empowerment Framework, Research Ethics and Safety Guidance as well as a Compendium of tools and guides on women's empowerment research.
  • Women's Empowerment SII Overview: The broad take-aways and lessons from the women's empowerment SII.

Across all of these areas, we have also organized the SII resources around three different lenses or ways of approaching the site’s materials:

  • Strategies: This view highlights a handful of strategies that the SII research suggests CARE could better leverage for impact on women's empowerment, and links to SII studies of projects where these strategies are discussed.
  • Geography: SII research comes from across Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and Sub-Saharan Africa, and this view sorts documents by region.
  • Sectors: Projects in the SII represented work in a range of programming sectors, and this view sorts documents accordingly. It also presents synthesis of findings from key subclusters of study in CARE's work economic development and HIV/AIDS sectors.

Key synthesis documents and briefs within this library that capture critical findings, lessons and concepts from the SII include:


 What is an SII?

The Strategic Impact Inquiry (SII) is in-depth impact research designed to assess CARE's impacts, beyond a given project or sector, on the underlying causes of global poverty and social injustice. SII methods balance the goals of rigor, learning and organizational change, with the specific goal of fostering a culture of critical thinking in CARE, and with those we serve. It is one important part of an overall system for impact assessment, program quality improvement, and organizational performance in CARE.

 Useful Links

CARE Resources

  • Program Shift Wiki
  • Basic & Girls Education SII
  • Sexual and Reproductive Health Publications - including key Social Analysis and Action tools
  • External Resources

  • Association for Women's Rights in Development (AWID)
  • Pathways of Empowerment research consortium